It’s been a while since I heard Kings of Leon but my mom had it playing in the kitchen as she was cooking dinner last night. I remember the summer days, driving with my mom, the windows down and Sex on Fire blasting through the speakers. I must have been nine or ten at the time and knew all the lyrics. Those were the days with not a care in the world other than showing up to softball practice on time. I just told my that memory and she responded, “the bass used to shake my car.” She used to be a “rocker” until I got her into country a few years ago.
After five years, Kings of Leon are releasing their eighth studio album, When You See Yourself, on March 5th. They put out two songs off the album earlier this month, The Bandit and 100,000 People.
The first teaser of the bands album was on an Instagram back in March with a video of Caleb playing guitar to an empty room and singing Going Nowhere.
The band formed in Nashville back in 1999 with three brothers, Caleb, Jared, Nathan and their cousin Mathew. Plot twist: they all go by their middle names. Their band name as a tribute to their grandfather Leon. Kings of Leon started out by making Southern Rock and Blues but they evolved through genres as years went by. They first reached their US success in 2008 when they released Sex on Fire, Use Somebody and Notion. This was also the first album they had that reached platinum.
The first gig the band ever had was at Smith’s Olde Bar in Atlanta. They opened up for the Skeeters and Billie Joe Shaver. The band told Rollingstone, that it was one of the scariest moments for them. Being at a country bar, they were surrounded by cowboy hats. Caleb told the band to “country up” and they ended up playing alternative country and the crowd loved it even though they were dressed at “New York Dolls.”
The band has had some high highs but also some lows lows. At a show in Dallas Texas in 2010, Caleb left the stage to vomit, claiming he wasn’t drunk. The band attempted to play without their front man but it didn’t leave a happy crowd.
In a statement from the band, they said Caleb’s incident was due to heat exhaustion and vocal issues and they ended up canceling the rest of their US Tour. A total of 28 shows that were never rescheduled. It wasn’t said what the exact reason to canceling the tour was but Jared wrote on Twitter that, “There are internal sicknesses and problems that have needed to be addressed… I can’t lie,” and that the band has “big problems.”
The band had struggled after Sex on Fire and Crawl with fans claiming that their new music was “sloppy” and they had “sold out.” They had issues with crowds on tour which their actions were later apologized for. The tour continued but in St. Louis, they were pelted with Pigeon poop. Jared was hit in the mouth and they put an end to the show. A few weeks after was when Caleb’s incident happened. After this, the band couldn’t get back up, making lazy music with no soul or meaning to it. Almost as if they have given up.
But after five years, lets see what they have in store.